Wednesday, December 01, 2004

The King In Bejing

His curling lips make women swoon. He's got the sideburns, the patent suit and the 55-pound belt buckle. He's got one for the money, two for the show, three to get ready, and he's set to go.

No, it's not "King of Rock and Roll". It is Martin Fontaine, a red-headed French Canadian who will play The King in 'The Elvis Story,' to debut this Thursday at the Poly Theatre. The musical tribute is the only full-length musical production that recreates the life, times and music of Elvis Presley, from his discovery at Sun Records in Memphis, through his swinging Hollywood heyday, to his final years as a Vegas icon.

As the only performer to receive authorization from Elvis' family to play the icon on stage, Martin Fontaine has played the lead an astounding 1,000 times since 1995, which has earned him huge fame and recognition. That may make him a hound dog, but Fontaine insists it doesn't make him an Elvis impersonator.

"I'm an actor-singer playing the role of Elvis on stage," says the star.

"When I arrive at the theatre, I transform into Elvis. I show the young, energetic, shy, unsure-of-himself Elvis. That's my job on stage. But offstage, people don't see me as Elvis. If you passed me on the street, you might think I look like an accountant."



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